IDF already implementing the lessons

The IDF has invested hundreds of millions of shekels in beefing up Military Intelligence since the war.

ashkenazi flag 298.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
ashkenazi flag 298.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
While the Winograd report on the Second Lebanon War harshly criticized Defense Minister Amir Peretz and former chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. (res.) Dan Halutz, it also offered recommendations for the IDF, which is preparing for the possibility of future conflicts. Immediately after receiving the report on Monday, Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi appointed OC Planning Division Maj.-Gen. Ido Nehushtan to head a team of officers who will review the report and cull practical conclusions from it. The report cited failures in Military Intelligence, claiming that while Hizbullah was a "target" for the military, intelligence during the war was found lacking. According to the report, the IDF had not stepped up intelligence gathering efforts in Lebanon even after Military Intelligence pointed to an increase in the possibility of war with Hizbullah. In December 2005, OC Military Intelligence Maj.-Gen. Amos Yadlin issued a letter in which he warned of a flare-up in violence along the northern border. According to the report, tactical intelligence, needed by ground forces operating in Lebanon, was not obtained. "There was a problem with intelligence during the war, and this is something that is already in the process of being fixed," a senior defense official said. The report also cited a gap in intelligence resources allocated to Northern Command, particularly the Galilee Division. The report concluded - based on documents compiled by Northern Command's chief intelligence officer - that while there were bits and pieces of information indicating that Hizbullah was planning a kidnapping, there was not a formal intelligence-issued warning to forces deployed in the field. The report also found that the IDF's ammunition stockpiles were severely lacking and were far behind the minimum amount allowed by orders. Peretz was asked about the inventory status and replied that, according to his knowledge, it was at the allowed minimum. Concerning the IDF's emergency warehouses, which were found to contain outdated and inadequate equipment for reservists during the war, the report found that Ground Forces Command had not invested a "single shekel" in improving the situation from 2001 until 2006. "It is no wonder that the reservists were disappointed when they were drafted during the war… and received equipment that was in some cases 20 years old," the report stated. OC Logistics and Medical Branch Maj.-Gen. Avi Mizrahi announced plans in March to invest NIS 2 billion in upgrading equipment used by reservists during a war. He said the emergency warehouses would undergo a complete overhaul over a period of five years, and receive new vests, helmets, weapons and uniforms.